Government stokes Mersey Heat expansion with £6m new funding

Liverpool waterfront

The Government has awarded £6.2m to Peel NRE’s low carbon district heat network Mersey Heat to investigate expanding the network to include Liverpool’s Three Graces buildings and surrounding properties at the Pier Head.

The grant from the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) is in partnership with Triple Point Heat Networks Investment Management and will also help to fund one of two 3MW low-carbon heat pumps, the first of which will be water source heat pump at Peel NRE’s energy centre at Great Howard Street.

This new funding also enables Mersey Heat to undertake further feasibility studies to extend the network to the Pier Head and to be able to offer low carbon heat to the Grade I-listed Royal Liver Building, the Grade II-listed Cunard and Port of Liverpool buildings, in partnership with the buildings’ owners.

The Grade II-listed George’s Dock Building and the Museum of Liverpool, which opened in 2011, will also be included in the designs for the heat network extension.

In December, 2019, Peel appointed Blackburn renewable energy company Vital Energi to deliver its Mersey Heat network which was then planned to provide heat for up to 9,000 homes and four million sq ft of commercial space at the nearby Liverpool Waters, the £5.5bn Peel-owned commercial and residential development on the banks of the River Mersey.

The scheme’s energy centre received planning consent from Liverpool City Council in February last year.

More than 2.5km of pipework for the 4.1km network has already been installed and apartments at the newly-converted Tobacco Warehouse at Stanley Dock are already receiving heat from the network, soon to be followed by The Titanic Hotel and Southern Warehouse and Liverpool Waters’ Princes Parade.

Minister for Climate Change, Lord Callanan, said: “Changing the way we heat our homes and workspaces is key to tackling pollution and today’s investment into new heat networks will ensure these areas are placed at the heart of the UK’s green industrial revolution.”

Jonathan Burley, commercial director at Peel NRE, part of Peel L&P, said: “Mersey Heat supports national and local targets to achieve net zero and we’re pleased to receive further funding to help roll-out the network on a larger scale.

“The addition of large historical buildings like the Three Graces would make a high profile impact on reducing Liverpool’s carbon footprint and we look forward to working with the buildings’ owners and our district heat network specialists, Ener-Vate, to progress these designs and hopefully connect some of Liverpool’s most prestigious properties to our low carbon network.”

Last September Peel NRE confirmed plans to develop the next phase of the Mersey Heat network to link the existing infrastructure at Princes Parade at Liverpool Waters to Stanley Dock and the new energy centre.

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